Brief Responses to Jay Dyer

Jay Dyer has resurrected a few old jibes at his blog in two posts (first)(second).

In the first article he resurrects the assertion (which I already debunked) that Calvinists are Nestorians or “proto-Nestorians”:

Here, St. Athanasius rebukes the Proto-Nestorians and by extension, their modern day re-incarnation, the Calvinists. So, we now officially have five well-known Calvinists who have made pro-Nestorian statements: A.A. Hodge, R.J. Rushdoony, Eric Svendson, Turretinfan and John W. Robbins co-author, Sean Gerety.

Mr. Dyer is being a little misleading in presenting things this way. Speaking only for myself and A.A. Hodge, our comments were that Nestorius was false accused of holding Nestorianism. Jay’s comment suggests something else to the reader.

What about the substance of what Athanasius wrote? Is it opposed to Reformed theology? On the contrary, Athanasius properly distinguishes between the human and divine natures, even while affirming the unity of the person: “But the Word Himself offered His own Body on our behalf that our faith and hope might not be in man, but that we might have our faith in God the Word Himself.” And again: “For humanly He enquires where Lazarus is laid, but raises him up divinely.”

Athanasius even mentions the issue of the substitutionary atonement: “And it has been made plain to all that not for His own sake but for ours He underwent all things, that we by His sufferings might put on freedom from suffering and incorruption [1 Corinthians 15:53], and abide unto life eternal.” And again: “But in the same body in which He was when he washed their feet, He also carried up our sins to the Tree [1 Peter 2:24].”

The second article resurrects the assertion that Calvinists are Manicheans (which I already debunked). The second article primarily relies on Gregory of Nyssa. The bigger part of my response will have to wait for another time, where I will argue that although Gregory of Nyssa does not make reference to “original sin” as such (that term is one that has historically been more popular in the West, especially following Augustine), Gregory inconsistently affirms various of the aspects of it, namely those aspects that are the most clear from Scripture. The lesser part of the response (and an adequate response to the quotation provided from Gregory) is that like Gregory of Nyssa we oppose dualism of the kind that posits two distinct first causes: one good and one evil. Thus, we avoid the charge of Manicheanism or even any reasonable accusation of tendency thereto.

-TurretinFan

17 Responses to “Brief Responses to Jay Dyer”

  1. Acolyte4236 Says:

    The arguments aside, Dyer is not now, nor has ever been to my knowledge a member of the Orthodox church, or any even uncanonical body claiming to be such.

  2. Turretinfan Says:

    Acolyte4236:http://www.antipelagian.com/2009/10/jay-dyer-re-convertssort-of.html-TurretinFan

  3. Acolyte4236 Says:

    Please note that at no time did Dyer disclose any parish to which he was attached as a member. He was a catachumen for a short period and then publically renounced Orthodoxy before returning to Rome. He was never received as a member of the Orthodox Church and the link you provide doesn't indicate that he was.When he says he returned to being "Orhtodox" he means in his views. If you or he thinks otherwise, please simply note the parish and jurisdiction in which he is a communing memeber.

  4. Turretinfan Says:

    I'm not the least interest in trying to prove he's a member in a parish somewhere. I'm content with the report I already provided … if you're not, it's up to you to investigate the matter further.

  5. Jay Dyer Says:

    You haven't debunked anything because you still misunderstand the position and are apparently intent on not understanding it. If you took some time and understood the definitions of hypostasis, nature, person, operation/energy, etc., you would benefit. No, I do not attend an Orthodox Church. There is no Orthodox Church within 3 hours from where I presently live. I was a catechumen for roughly 2 years (due to attending twice a month because of excessive drive) at St. Ignatius of Antioch in Franklin, TN under Fr. Stephen Rogers. Presently, I attend my local Catholic Church as this seems most wise given my situation.

  6. Turretinfan Says:

    "You haven't debunked anything because you still misunderstand the position and are apparently intent on not understanding it."I understand my position and I understand how my position corresponds to historic definitions of the faith. It's possible I don't understand your position, but I leave it up to you to try to explain your side clearly."If you took some time and understood the definitions of hypostasis, nature, person, operation/energy, etc., you would benefit."Last time we discussed things, I had the impression that I understood them better than you. Perhaps we were talking past one another, perhaps you've learned more since then, or perhaps you're right."No, I do not attend an Orthodox Church. There is no Orthodox Church within 3 hours from where I presently live. I was a catechumen for roughly 2 years (due to attending twice a month because of excessive drive) at St. Ignatius of Antioch in Franklin, TN under Fr. Stephen Rogers. Presently, I attend my local Catholic Church as this seems most wise given my situation."I guess that settles that!

  7. Jay Dyer Says:

    You can think that, and you can think with your master that there are three wills in the Trinity, too, and one will in Christ (since White says will is a property of person). But this is only to your own emarassment.Further, the numerous people who left Calvinism that are on my fb friend's list would also beg to differ with you over who understood what.

  8. Jay Dyer Says:

    I think the best approach would just be to read a good booklist. And I'm not being rude, I'm seriously saying to work through a good checklist of stuff.

  9. Turretinfan Says:

    "You can think that, and you can think with your master that there are three wills in the Trinity, too, and one will in Christ (since White says will is a property of person). But this is only to your own emarassment."White's my good friend and I love him dearly. We don't agree on everything, but I don't think you'll have any success in tarring him as a monothelite."Further, the numerous people who left Calvinism that are on my fb friend's list would also beg to differ with you over who understood what."They're not begging here, assuming they exist.-TurretinFan

  10. Craig French Says:

    No matter what religion Dyer switches to on any given day…you can always count on him being an anti-Calvinist.

  11. louis Says:

    So the guy who says that Calvinists are heretics is going to a Roman mass? That's rich.

  12. Viisaus Says:

    Dyer, that venerable Gregory of Nyssa whom you rely upon was pretty heretical himself – an Origenist, believing in universal salvation of all, Satan included.

  13. Jay Dyer Says:

    White argues as follows:“One of the characteristics of personal existence is will. Few would argue the point in relationship to the Father, as He obviously has a will. So too, the Son has a will, for he says to the Father in the Garden, “not as I will, but as you will.” (Matthew 26:39) The ascription of will to the Persons indicates the ability to reason, to think, to act, to desire – all those things we associate with self-consciousness. As we shall see later, there is a difference between nature and person, and one of those differences is the will. Inanimate objects do not will; neither do animals. Part of the imago dei is the will itself.”http://vintage.aomin.org/CHALC.htmlHe says will is a property of person. As for St. Athanasius, he writes:56. But they ought, when they hear ‘I and the Father are one,’ to see in Him the oneness of the Godhead and the propriety of the Father’s Essence; and again when they hear, ‘He wept’ and the like, to say that these are proper to the body; especially since on each side they have an intelligible ground, viz. that this is written as of God and that with reference to His manhood. For in the incorporeal, the properties of body had not been, unless He had taken a body corruptible and mortal ; for mortal was Holy Mary, from whom was His body. Wherefore of necessity when He was in a body suffering, and weeping, and toiling, these things which are proper to the flesh, are ascribed to Him together with the body. If then He wept and was troubled, it was not the Word, considered as the Word, who wept and was troubled, but it was proper to the flesh; and if too He besought that the cup might pass away, it was not the Godhead that was in terror, but this affection too was proper to the manhood. And that the words ‘Why have You forsaken Me?’ are His, according to the foregoing explanations (though He suffered nothing, for the Word was impassible), is notwithstanding declared by the Evangelists; since the Lord became man, and these things are done and said as from a man, that He might Himself lighten these very sufferings of the flesh, and free it from them. Whence neither can the Lord be forsaken by the Father, who is ever in the Father, both before He spoke, and when He uttered this cry. Nor is it lawful to say that the Lord was in terror, at whom the keepers of hell’s gates shuddered and set open hell, and the graves did gape, and many bodies of the saints arose and appeared to their own people. Therefore be every heretic dumb, nor dare to ascribe terror to the Lord whom death, as a serpent, flees, at whom demons tremble, and the sea is in alarm; for whom the heavens are rent and all the powers are shaken. For behold when He says, ‘Why have You forsaken Me?’ the Father showed that He was ever and even then in Him; for the earth knowing its Lord who spoke, straightway trembled, and the veil was rent, and the sun was hidden, and the rocks were torn asunder, and the graves, as I have said, did gape, and the dead in them arose; and, what is wonderful, they who were then present and had before denied Him, then seeing these signs, confessed that ‘truly He was the Son of God."http://jaysanalysis.wordpress.com/2010/04/15/athanasius-shows-the-reformed-to-be-arian-pt-2/As for Craig French – count on him to make a personal attack, when, hypocritically, he's changed his mind in the past, too.

  14. Jay Dyer Says:

    They exist.And I'm well aware of what Nyssa taught.

  15. Turretinfan Says:

    White says a will is a property of personal existence. Something that is not personal cannot have a will. You need to read White's comment within its context, which is a debate with a Oneness heretic.As for the quotation you provide from Athanasius, he doesn't even mention the words "will" and "person" … -TurretinFan

  16. Alex Says:

    If I'm not mistaken James White stated in a debate with Robert Sungenis some time back that there are two wills in Christ. Sungenis pressed him on whether this was orthodox belief and must be believed to which White replied in the affirmative. White just couldn't provide scriptural proof.

  17. Nuno Fonseca Says:

    I exist.Many others manifested this as well after your debate together. Deal with it.

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